Managing Chaos in a José Andrés’ Kitchen
Managing a chaotic creative process and struggling with the operational balance of art vs. science.
Joe Raffa is an Executive Chef at ThinkFoodGroup, the restaurant group inspired by the creative leadership of Chef José Andrés and his Spanish culinary excellence. The development team is composed of very creative individuals who are not always the most organized. Joe wants to know how would you control the chaos of last minute ideas and changes? He shares a vignette from the Las Vegas grand opening of their China Poblano restaurant to illustrate the chaos; José likes to walk into the restaurant with his pink and blue highlighters, slashing menu items that do not work and demanding new ideas be implemented immediately - in this case, just 2 hours before the grand opening. How can the development team sustain this creative tension while still innovating their culinary products and maintaining the operational effectiveness to drive the bottom line?